"Every house where love abides
And friendship is a guest,
Is surely home, and home sweet home
For there the heart can rest."
~ Henry Van Dyke

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

O Christmas tree.....

What is the one most beautiful thing we decorate with at the Christmas season than our tree? Each year, I am a child again as I pull out each ornament carefully to hang on the tree.


My tree is made up of many layers and has developed over a number of years. I have made little changes here and there but it is a classic tree done in a Victorian style. It will not change with trends although there are new ornaments every once in a while. I like the idea that things return each year with the holidays. There is something very comforting about this tradition.

Those who followed my previous blog may remember that Charles Dickens himself influenced the look of my tree. I love the short story he wrote called 'A Christmas Tree'. This set the tone for my yearly search when I started to put together my own tree. Look for an excerpt at the end of this entry.


Along with the more serious ornaments are a few whimsical ones like this elf that was a gift from my mother.

My tree has ornaments that I have collected from many countries but also many ornaments that were given to me as gifts.

You will find many ornaments with The Nutcracker theme. I love this ballet and watch it each year. There are ballet dancers dancing among my boughs along with nutcrackers themselves.

Another love is vintage looking Santas. I rarely add ornaments anymore but this year found 3 of these beautiful reproduction vintage Santas at a little Christmas shop in Germany while we were on vacation.

I think the diversity of ornaments makes a tree something magical. You just want to keep looking to see each and every ornament. Hiding away among the branches is the German pickle ornament. Whomever finds the ornament first is said to have good luck throughout the coming year. My friend Saskia found it last year and she can tell you that the legend of the German pickle is true!

To get the Victorian look, I use three layers of various ribbons, candle lights, overflowing ornaments, pearl garland, berries, tulips (a reference to living in Holland) and red and white poinsettias. It is not a tree that is put up in a short space of time but each year we are glad we did take the time.

"I have been looking on, this evening, at a merry company of children assembled round that pretty German toy, a Christmas Tree. The tree was planted in the middle of a great round table, and towered high above their heads. It was brilliantly lighted by a multitude of little tapers; and everywhere sparkled and glittered with bright objects."

from 'A Christmas Tree' by Charles Dickens

20 comments:

Sonja said...

Zo groot en zo vol! Wat zit er toch veel in jouw boom! En alles met een verhaal. Ben benieuwd wie dit jaar de 'pickle' zal vinden!

Tracy said...

Your tree is a Christmas dream, Heidi... beautiful! You should be a tree decorator! ;o) Happy Days ((HUGS))

Nancy said...

Your tree is just as beautiful as it always is every year. It is much nicer even, when you actually see it.
Your new Santas are cute, and I like the little purse or bag you have in the tree. Is you village up yet, mine is, I have to take some pictures.
Love you, Mom

Linda said...

Heidi your tree is just breath taking. I love the Nutcracker too, each year we go to the Nutcracker Ballet...it's just part of the holidays for us. I usually buy and an ornament as a momento of the evening. Your new Santas are very sweet. Thank you for sharing your beautiful tree...hugs, Linda

Joni said...

Your tree is lovely, Heidi. I love your narrative about it and I almost felt like I was there helping to trim it. Well, watching you trim it! I am in awe of your sense of tradition. Merry Christmas!

Elizabethd said...

A very beautiful tree, with such prety ornaments. It is lovely to add to family heirlooms by finding extra special ornaments. I keep the ones made by my children, slightly worn now, but precious.

Tam said...

Lovely tradition Heidi and a very beautiful tree!!
Hugs2U!

Saskia said...

The tree is beautiful! It is filled with great ornaments. Makes you want to look for hours. Maybe thats what I have to do, if I want another year of luck.
This year was a very good year. Start of a new study, a new job, and a new house. Just perfect!! Gona paint my front door pickle green I think...
Saskia

MarianneD said...

Je hebt je best gedaan Heidi,hij is prachtig! Hier is onze seizoensboom ook veranderd van de herfstboom naar de sneeuwpoppenboom met natuurlijk hier en daar een eekhoorntje...;-)
Leuk,bij de boeken zag ik een paar boeken van Thomas Kinkade.ik heb pas 'The Christmas Angel' gelezen,ik viel op de prachtige kaft...;-),mooi boek!

Maggie said...

Heidi your Christmas tree looks beautiful.

angelasweby said...

Heidi, thanks so much for sharing your beautiful tree and it's story with us. I always feel as if I have been invited to your house for a very special occasion when I turn to your blog and see a posting like this one.

You welcome me into your warm Victorian parlour and there in all it's glory is your tree. Every decoration has a story of it's own and sits comfortably in it's own special place. I can smell the fresh pine from the tree and the the delicious fragrance of the mince pies cooking in the kitchen. Keep them nice and warm for me Heidi, I'm on my way :>)
Hugs Angela

Aunt Amelia's Attic said...

Simply beautiful...

Blessedmom's Simple Home said...

What pretty photos. I came over from My Yellow Farmhouse. We obviously like the same things (our background) :-) I'll visit again soon.
Blessings,
Marcia

Anonymous said...

Heidi je boom ziet er weer prachtig en goed gevuld uit! Kun je aan de quiltgroep even doorgeven hoe laat Saskia komt zodat wij wat meer tijd hebben om de "pickle" te zoeken, ha, ha? Grapje want zelfs dan kunnen wij niet tippen aan de "fantastische speurneus" van Saskia. En weet je wat? Wij gunnen het haar van harte en genieten van haar speurdrift. Tot woensdag. Groetjes en hugs
Elly

DonnaTN said...

A lovely tree and I love having ornaments that have wonderful memories attached.

Celestial Charms said...

The most charming tree, indeed. You can get dreamily lost within its branches and that is simply magical. Thank you for sharing.
Maureen

Fluitenkruid said...

Hij is prachtig geworden!

*Ulrike* said...

So Pretty!!! I don't remember the German pickle, I'll have to ask my cousins about it. Of course I was a small child when we lived there (twice), and you don't always remember those things. I surely could use finding the pickle this year!!
I have enjoyed reading your blog, and look forward to coming back!
Ulrike

Carolien said...

Your tree looks lovely, Heidi! We put up ours as well this week. It is indeed the 'being a child-feeling'. Well, I enjoy it as a child really! Just lokking at the glow of the red bulbs etc. Nice!
Enjoy your decorations!

Hugs, Heidi

The Dutchess said...

Prachtige boom....Fijne feestdagen..:))